Before the emergence of the generative AI frenzy, Google was a pioneer in the development of powerful artificial intelligence and machine learning models.
The company's efforts in generative AI, however, have lagged behind those of rivals like OpenAI and Microsoft, who are presently monopolising the market with ChatGPT and Bing Chat. Even Google Bard, the company's direct response to these services, has disappointed and fallen short of expectations.
Google will need to outperform the competition in order to accelerate its growth and, ideally, close the innovation gap, and what better opportunity to do so than at Google I/O on May 10?
It's almost a given that Google will utilise the stage this time to unveil its hottest, most recent advances in AI since the company's annual developer conference draws together experts from all around the world to learn more about the company's newest software and hardware innovations.
Here is a summary of what ZDNET anticipates Google to reveal on the day of the event:
1. Bard, but smarter
Google used to hold onto its AI models until it was certain they were ready to be made available to the general public. But Google changed its strategy in response to ChatGPT's explosive growth.
After learning about ChatGPT's success, the business hurried to create Google Bard, its own chatbot, before it was prepared to offer users genuine value. Sundar Pichai, the CEO of Google, has compared Bard to "a souped-up Civic" when contrasted to other AI models.
Pichai stated in the same interview that Google would soon upgrade Bard to a more competent PaLM model, enhancing its capacity for logic, coding, and maths. Google is anticipated to announce stated changes during Google I/O as it badly needs to atone for Bard's first introduction.
2. A new search engine
It has also been reported that Google is working on incorporating AI elements into its own search engine, using users' browsing behaviour to build personalised suggestions, including purchases and fundamental information in a conversational style. This move is reportedly being made to compete with Bing Chat.
According to The New York Times, the new service, which reportedly includes Project Magi, presently has around 160 full-time employees working on these features.
In the global search engine market, Google commands the largest market share, accounting for 90% of all searches. Google may take use of its leadership in the search business to advance in the AI sector by incorporating AI into its search engine.
At Google I/O the following week, expect to learn more about Magi and this upcoming search engine.
3. AI upgrades to Workspace
Google announced the addition of AI advancements to its Google Workspace back in March. This indicated that Google's widely utilised productivity applications, such as Gmail, Google Docs, and Slides, will soon receive an upgrade from generative AI.
Despite the announcement, these features are still in beta testing and have not yet been made available to the general public. The tech giant's announcement of the improved Workspace ensemble to the general public at Google I/O would be a fantastic opportunity.
The timing is especially great because although Microsoft announced a similar AI revamp to its Office 365 apps, the company has yet to release it to the public as well. Google has every chance to take the first punch in this AI bout.
4. Google Assistant could use a promotion
When they initially hit the market, voice assistants gave the impression that AI technology was at its most sophisticated. However, since then, the technology has stayed unchanged. The company's voice assistant, Google Assistant, is the ideal platform for generative AI integration because of this.
The Google Assistant would be positioned above Apple's Siri and Amazon Alexa if it were to get improved functionality and the capacity to produce content in response to user commands. Fortunately, there is no need to be concerned about the Microsoft AI assistant.
Amazon is actually already looking into this possibility for Alexa. Recently, the firm said that it was developing a big language model to power Alexa that was "much larger and much more generalised and capable."
5. Will Imagen finally debut?
A big element of the AI obsession has been the creation of AI art by programmes like DALL-E. Except for Google, many rivals have created their own rival generators as a result of DALL-E's enormous popularity.
The irony is that Google has long been developing Imagen, a very competent AI picture generator. But the business hasn't yet made it available to the general public. Is there a development issue here? Is the workforce insufficient to handle the service's demands? Are they concerned about repeating the Bard incident?
There is no better conference than I/O to make Google's text-to-image generator public. Just let's hope they do.
6. Developers tools
Google teases a "What's new in generative AI?" session on the event website, where the firm will present "a new suite of tools that make it simple for developers to build on top of our (Google's) best models."
Given that the event is intended for developers, it is safe to assume that a sizable amount of it will be devoted to tools and services targeted at that group, such as APIs and more effective work procedures.
As an example, OpenAI's launch of ChatGPT's developer API was a tremendous success for the business and allowed numerous companies, like Grammarly, to incorporate the cutting-edge technology into their own platforms.